It is important to understand the names and differences between the different "Types of Diets" there are in regards to food consistency to best understand where your child is and where their goals are.
Solids: There are different textures of foods and liquids that can make it easier and safer for a person to swallow. These textures make it easier to chew and move food in the mouth and reduce the risk of food or liquid going into the windpipe or trachea, which leads to the lungs
Thin puree: Food is smooth, moist, and pourable texture
Ex: smoothie, ice cream, apple sauce
Thick puree: Food that has a moist, thick puree texture. It does not need chewing. It will hold its shape on a plate. Food must be an even consistency with no lumps.
Mechanical soft: Food is soft, and easy to chew and swallow.
Ex: Ground cooked chicken, turkey, beef or pork, thinly shaved deli meats, eggs, soft cooked vegetables (without seeds or skins, and chopped into small pieces), bread
Regular: Food that is hard to chew and requires jaw strength to chew.
Ex: Tough, chewy meat, poultry or fish, foods with chewy skins (fried), nuts/seeds, dried fruits or fruits with skins, raw vegetables, crunchy foods (pretzels, chips)
Liquids: There are different thickened consistencies for liquids that will be recommended by a Speech Language Pathologist for a person who is having difficulty swallowing liquids. Drinking thickened liquids can help prevent choking and stop fluid from entering the lungs.
Thin: regular liquids with no thickener added
Nectar: liquids that are easily pourable and are comparable to apricot nectar or thicker cream soups.
Honey: liquids that are slightly thicker, are less pourable, and drizzle from a cup or bowl.
Pudding: liquids that hold their own shape. They are not pourable and are usually eaten with a spoon.
Thickened liquids can either be made by dispensing a certain amount of thickener packet into a liquid, or can be bought as pre-thickened drinks.